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Scarifier

If mowing is the main operation of the lawn, it is not enough to obtain grass quality, since it is limited to regularly cut grass at a certain height. (Non-contractual photo, does not necessarily reflect the drawing)

We know the need to water regularly in times of drought, to provide fertilizer during the rest of vegetation, to fight against weeds and against these enemies of the beautiful "green" that are moles and voles.
But we forget very often that the lawn needs to breathe, the air being essential for the satisfactory implantation of the roots.
In addition, perennials that make up the largest part of a turf must benefit from a division of perennial tufts which alone will allow their regeneration and multiplication. All this is not done alone: ​​you have to ventilate and scarify.

Aeration

It is obtained by perforating the lawn very closely. The simplest but also the most trying technique is to "prick" the grass in place with a beaker fork held vertically. This traditional method is opposed to the use of manual or mechanical machines, the latter being the domain of the amateur.
In principle, they are close to the operation of cutting cylinder hand mowers, the wheels, instead of driving the latter, being in connection with a cylindrical cage with spades; its rotation, when pushing the machine in front of you, making penetrate the pikes in the turf. To limit the effort, still important, the spikes are mounted on spring to avoid jolts when you meet a stone or a harder ground.
Finally, it should be noted that articulated metal soles with spikes that we put under the boots. It is enough "to walk on the lawn trying not to stay... planted!

Scarification

It consists in sort of "cutting" vertically the lawn by practicing a laniérage conducive to the multiplication of tufts of perennials that make up the lawn. Traditionally, this is achieved with a special rake whose teeth are so many blades. His handling is very painful. The scarification also ensures aeration of the turf and helps to remove the moss, mowing debris which accumulate at the foot of the blades of grass, and dead leaves. For a long time, the professionals benefit for this work of very efficient machines.
Currently, we find on the market of electric scarifiers whose engine has a power of about 1000 W and scarifiers equipped with a heat engine (3.5 HP).
The motor drives a rotary knife tool that scars the lawn at the same time as it participates in pulling the machine. Grass, moss and scraped leaves are thrown into a collection bin.
The working depth of the tool is adjustable according to the needs of scarification of the lawn. The control of the device is done by a switch / trigger which works as soon as one releases the handle or the handlebars. It is associated with a circuit breaker that cuts the motor when it starts to work and risks overload, which occurs when the machine meets tall grass or when the ground is very compact. This is not a malfunction but an indication that the engine should be "blown" for 2-3 minutes. Then simply press the circuit breaker ON button.

Anatomy of a scarifier

Anatomy of a scarifier

How and when to scarify the garden?

The scarification takes place in alternating parallel successive passes. Avoid working on grass that is too tall (no more than 8 cm) and do not use the device after watering or after rain for obvious safety reasons.
The ideal is to operate when the soil is sufficiently loose to allow the penetration of the knives.It is good to scarify before and after a mowing, the first passage straightens the grass, ensuring a combing of the grass favorable to the mowing.
Scarification should be practiced as early as March, when the grass starts to grow again and can be done during the entire mowing season, that is, until about October.

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